HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Federally funded aerospace engineering activities at the University of Alabama in Huntsville bring in millions of dollars a year. The National Science Foundation's Higher Education Research and Development Survey ranks UAH 5th in the country.
This recognition has a lot to do with STEM - science, technology, engineering, and math.
Meet an aerospace engineering student
Day one of the winter semester is now in session. Noah Naden is a senior aerospace engineering student at the university.
"I saw that hey - I want to build space habitats and enable people to be on Earth," said Naden.
His passion allows him to conduct high-level research for federal agencies like NASA, the FBI, and the Department of Defense.
"Research at the university is to enable those agencies to fulfill their mission in 10-15 years," said UAH Vice President for Research Bob Lindquist.
Federal agencies are invested
The National Science Foundation conducted the study and ranked UAH as a top contender for federally funded engineering research. The federal government poured 82 million dollars into the school. The next fiscal year could reveal more than that.
"I'm actually involved with research myself doing space manufacturing," said Naden.
The survey ranks colleges and universities based on how much money federal dollars are spent on certain research in STEM-related programs.
"We have 5 areas in which we are the top 20," said Lindquist.
Naden's program - aerospace engineering - ranks 5th in the country.
UAH's federally financed research expenditures rank as follows:
· #5 Aerospace Engineering
· #8 Economics
· #11 Computer and Information Sciences
· #12 Atmospheric Science
· #12 Astronomy & Astrophysics
It's about credibility
"The survey gives an indication of the trust that the federal agencies have in the university," said Lindquist.
The university says it's contributing to the growing boom of science and technology in North Alabama.